As Fox News faces a $1.6 billion lawsuit from Dominion Voting Systems over false reporting, the legal principle of “actual malice” is under scrutiny. While some have called for the erosion of this protection for free speech, The Future of Free Speech Projects Senior Fellow @Jeff Kosseff argues that doing so would be a threat to our democracy, as it would stifle reporting and criticism with the threat of litigation. The actual malice rule protects all speakers, regardless of their politics, and gives them the flexibility to investigate, report on, and criticize those in power. It’s a vital First Amendment precedent that we should all defend.

Jeff Kosseff is a senior legal fellow at The Future of Free Speech Project and the author of the forthcoming book “Liar in a Crowded Theater: Freedom of Speech in a World of Misinformation.”

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Jeff Kosseff is a Non-Resident Senior Fellow for The Future of Free Speech. He writes about online speech, the First Amendment, and Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act.